Monday, January 21, 2019

This is the most amazing thing, and you can help

Pearl's Memory Babies is an organization that helps donate realistic baby dolls to Alzheimer's and dementia patients. It was founded by Sandy Cambron, after she discovered that her mother-in-law, who was afflicted with Alzheimer's, responded favorably to and was soothed by the baby doll Sandy and her husband had brought her. They brought more and discovered that Pearl's reaction was not unique - other patients had similar responses.

After Pearl passed away, Sandy started the organization and along with Shannon Blair, whose mother also had Alzheimer's, delivers baby dolls (along with stuffed puppies) to senior and assisted living facilities in Kentucky.

It's such a great idea and I'm surprised I'd never heard anything about it sooner. When my Grandma Loomis was in a facility for the last month of her life, there was a wheelchair-bound Alzheimer's patient that I saw frequently. I once sat with him, held his hand, and hoped I was getting through to him, but it didn't feel like I made any sort of impression on him. The staff told me he had been there for three years and that his wife came to visit him every single day. I can't imagine what it must be like to have to face that, a loved one who no longer knows you, on a daily basis. This story makes me wonder what sort of reaction I might have gotten from him if I'd had a doll or a stuffed animal with me, something that I could have left with him.

If you'd like to help Pearl's Memory Babies, you can donate here.

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